In high school, Dylan Owen, a 20-year-old Goshen, NY native, put out his first full-length album called Senioritis. But now, as a sophomore in college, it seems Owen has graduated from writing a “Book Report” in high school, to a more grown-up album, set to drop Jan. 22.
Owen is now working on a free EP titled Keep Your Friends Close. DJ Grumble, Nico Marchese and Kinetics will all be featured alongside Owen on the CD, which is expected to show the young musician in a more mature light than the work he put out on his first record. Owen admitted that he has improved as a rapper since Senioritis was released.
“That’s basically what the album is about. It’s supposed to chronicle me going off to college,” Owen said. “[There’s] definitely a lot of different stuff referring to my life experience over the past year.”
The EP will be a free release, which Owen didn’t do for his two previous EPs or full-length record. He hopes the EP will spread to more people because there isn’t the limitation of purchasing the album. The title song (which can be downloaded for free) was produced by Marchese and features Owen’s brother on guitar.
“I think the song is really interpretative. I’m kind of interested in the way that people have received it,” Owen said of “Keep Your Friends Close,” the story of a sad breakup. “People seem to like it and it’s been fairly well received, which is good. I think the lesson that everyone can take from it is different.”
When Owen realized the EP would be coming out later than first anticipated, he created a promo video to give his fans more of a taste of what would be on the EP. “The idea with the promo video, conceptually, is that I’m writing a letter to a friend and I stay up all night writing this letter and then I travel to deliver the letter and than at the end, in the last shot, I’m leaning on a mailbox and I’m hesitating, like whether or not I should mail the letter or not,” Owen said.
The promo and the album explore keeping friends physically and emotionally close. Throughout Keep Your Friends Close, Owen touches on the, “different ways that you can interpret that phrase.”
So now, with the EP dropping at the end of the month, what’s next for the young rapper?
“The only thing that I can say for sure it that I’m going to be releasing a lot more songs and a lot more often. So, there’s going to be a ton of new material coming out,” Owen said. “I have a bunch of collaborations going on, so those are going to come out and I’m looking to release some more solo stuff right afterwards.”